By Maimuna Sey-Jawo
ChildFund The Gambia, last week donated over 21, 690 pairs of Toms Shoes to their partners for distribution among school-going children.
The items were handed over to affiliates Foni Dinding, Sama Kairo and Dinding Yeriwa Federations in the West Coast and Lower River Regions respectively.
Speaking at the handing over ceremony at the ChildFund offices in Kanifing, Alieu Marr, child protection advocacy specialist, said ChildFund has been donating shoes for children for 35 years now.
This latest donation he said, will enhance the smooth learning of children. He said the shoes will also address issues faced by school-going children and help protect them from harm and keep their feet healthy.
“If our feet are comfortable, protected, and well-supported, we can walk or run farther, stand longer, and do more of the things we need to do,” he noted.
He praised ChildFund for doing a lot in the country particularly in promoting child rights, health, education, women empowerment and others.
The shoes will benefit up to 18, 000 children and 3,690 adults, the acting country director of ChildFund Gambia, Nfamara Darboe, said.
He said they are partnering with other institutions who give them materials to distribute to their partners in the Gambia.
“We started operations in The Gambia since 1984 mainly focusing on children’s issues to see to it that they are educated, healthy, and confident. Currently, we have 16, 000 children enrolled and about 10, 000 of them have been sponsored already,” he said.
Speaking on behalf of the beneficiary, Edi Bah, Dinding Yeriwa Federation manager, thanked ChildFund for the donation, and assured that the shoes will be distributed accordingly.
Toms Shoes is a for-profit company based in Playa Del Rey, California. Founded in 2006 by Blake Mycoskie, an entrepreneur from Arlington, Texas, the company designs and markets shoes — as well as eyewear, coffee, apparel, and handbags.